. Writing Funding Bids

. Developing Relationships With Funders

. Funding Exercise

Introduction                                   What Is The
Organisations approach f...
Relying on one route to project                   Sources of finance and funding for social
Funding Searches                                  Local Council For Voluntary
Loan Finance                                       The following questions may help with
. What the project aims to achieve
                                               Practical Tips
. How it ...
Application Checklist

   Is the application being made to an appropriate funder?

   Does the project fit...
  The best policy for dealing with funders is to treat them as t...
The WLP Trust -                                 Wrexham Women's Aid
General Grants Prog...
Harris Homes                                     All of the above are eligible for support
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53 Fundraising


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53 Fundraising

  1. 1. FUNDING 5 5.3 FUNDRAISING . Writing Funding Bids . Developing Relationships With Funders . Funding Exercise P 179
  2. 2. FUNDRAISING 5.3 WRITING FUNDING BIDS Introduction What Is The Organisations approach funding in many Funding Required For? different ways but the reason for it remains It may sound obvious but it is crucial to the same. For many projects the pressure remain aware that the majority of bids for to keep generating income for survival funding are intended only to assist in the is immense and can mean that funding piloting, start-up or development of projects applications are made on a reactive rather and not to provide a permanent revenue than strategic basis. source, regardless of how good or needed the project actually is. It needs to be recognised from the beginning that funding is a tool that will (Sustainability meaning to keep in enable an organisation to achieve things existence or maintain). Sustainability is a that may otherwise not be possible. key word in any funders vocabulary and it However as with any other tool funding is therefore vital to consider right from the needs to be applied correctly if it is to start how the project will support itself be of any benefit. financially after the initial funding period. If an organisation does not have a Chasing funding indiscriminately is poor sufficiently specific sustainability plan practice and can result in an organisation and can not show how it will survive after straying from their objectives in order to the lifetime of the funding, then the obtain income and in some cases distorting likelihood is that the application will and deskilling the organisation in be refused. the process. The sustainability plan has to be measurable It is evident that people who write and achievable and should ideally link to the successful bids are clear about what the business planning process carried out by the project is for, how it will be delivered and organisation and any partners in the project. what the result will be for stakeholders Simply referring to plans by the steering (stakeholder meaning a group or an group to identify ways to make the project individual who has an interest in or is sustainable throughout the lifetime of the affected by the proposed project). project is insufficient. P 180
  3. 3. FUNDRAISING 5.3 Relying on one route to project Sources of finance and funding for social sustainability can be problematic and ideally enterprises include: the funding application should identify a . Trading income number of ways to continue the project that . Retained profits the funder is ’pump priming’. (Pump prime meaning to encourage the growth or action . Bank, community development finance of something i.e. assisting the start of institutions and other loans the project). . Member share purchase The plan for sustainability needs to . Voluntary investment by members be linked to the key milestones of the . Grants project including time indicators and . Loans should clearly state who is responsible for deciding the best way forward and how it will be achieved. Social enterprises may qualify for grants in the same way as other types The term ’exit strategy’ is often used in this of business. In addition social enterprises context however in real terms exit strategy in disadvantaged communities, or which means a plan of what will happen at the end address social exclusion, may qualify for of a project and how it will be wound down. start-up and capital grants. However it is important to remember that to rely on The language used in a funding bid needs to grant funding alone is dangerous and can be clear and incorporate what the project result in a project running only for the will do, who will do it, what will be different lifetime of the funding provided. because of these actions and how the changes/benefits that have taken place can be demonstrated in terms of achievement. Getting Started When a clear view of what the project is When deciding whether to seek funding for seeking to achieve has been decided upon, a project the organisation should consider potential funders can be sought. Being clear some basic questions such as: about what is trying to be achieved makes . Identified and able to clearly demonstrate it easier to search for funders. the need for the project? . Gathered information/research material to prove the need? . Considered whether the project should have partners to help share the workload? . Decided who within the organisation can drive the project forward and can they show that they are capable of running the project and have enough free time to spend doing so? P 181
  4. 4. FUNDRAISING 5.3 Funding Searches Local Council For Voluntary Services/County For Voluntary Council The next step is to draw up a list of potential funders. To do this, you will need to do some A Council For Voluntary Service (CVS), or research. For example: the Welsh equivalent County For Voluntary . Research potential funders; Council (CVC), is a voluntary organisation, which is set up, owned and run by local . Choose funders whose criteria the groups to support, promote and develop project fits; local voluntary and community action. . Make contact before you prepare your CVS/CVC’s support their members by application to ensure your project fits providing them with a range of services and the funders’ criteria; by acting as a voice for the local voluntary and community sector. The local CVS/CVC . Find out the funders’ timetables or will have access to local funding initiatives. timescales for reply; To find the nearest CVS contact . State clearly where you hope to find and in Wales all the funding. There are a number of options to look Lottery at when searching for funding to get the The lottery has a number of funding project started including: programmes that assist social enterprises. The following site provides information on Local Government how to get Lottery funding, the latest news It is always a good idea to approach local on the organisations that distribute Lottery government to see if there are any funds money, and case studies on projects that available to assist local social enterprises. the Lottery has funded in the past. Regional Funding Charitable Trusts and Foundations A considerable proportion of funding is now distributed at a regional level. Information Some charitable trusts or foundations can be obtained from the DTI and the provide finance for social enterprises, the relevant Regional Development Agency following websites assist organisations in finding grant funding - Directory Of Social Change and Funding Central Government Funding Information For England the website Examples of trusts that have supported is social enterprises in the past are Esmee dedicated to giving the voluntary and Fairbairn Trust community sectors access to grants from the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trust and various central government departments. UnLtd - The Foundation For Social For Wales, the contact is The Welsh Entrepreneurs Assembly P 182
  5. 5. FUNDRAISING 5.3 Loan Finance The following questions may help with this process: A variety of loan finance options are available to social enterprises from banks . Is the finance plan clear and explicit? and building societies to community . If the funder has asked for specific development finance institutions (CDFI’s). outcomes, has the bid demonstrated Below are some helpful links on this topic: how they will be addressed? . Is the language used unambiguous? . Is the bid interesting? . Has evidence of the organisations effectiveness that underpins the proposal been brought out in the application? All funders publish guidelines that detail what they will and will not support and Acronyms should be avoided unless they also offer assistance in submitting an are clarified the first time that they are used. application with regard to the information Technical jargon and obscure professional that organisations need to provide. language should also be avoided as this masks the meaning of what the bid is Guidance information should be read actually trying to say. carefully, read again and read some more! Projects that are dreamt up to fit the It is a good idea to get a colleague or priorities of the funder are obvious and are external partner to read the application to less likely to succeed. It is crucial to check check for spelling/grammatical errors and the objectives and funding criteria to ensure also to logic check it. One of the problems that the project will fit. If there is any doubt with writing bids is that the writer can be then a call made to the funder will result in too close to it and although may have clear establishing this. Some funders are happy vision as to the project and its aims, forget to take telephone enquiries and others may to include key information. request a project brief prior to accepting an application. Application Structure Writing The Application An application should have clear structure. The following can be used as a guide but This is where the case is made for always follow the specific guidance provided financial support and it must be made well. by the funder. Remember there is vast competition for support so ensure that the application is . Project title well written and clear, fits the funders . Introduction - who the organisation is criteria, is within any deadline date, that . Proposal summary all of the questions have been answered and any requested supporting information . The problem or need and who will benefit such as business plans or accounts have from the project been included. P 183
  6. 6. FUNDRAISING 5.3 . What the project aims to achieve Practical Tips . How it will be achieved . If the Trust or funder has a website, check . How results will be monitored it out before making the application . How much money is needed; and . If possible and unless the funder stresses otherwise, type up the application form it . How much money will be raised from the is far neater organisation and/or other funding sources . Choose any requested referees carefully Always remember to include in-kind support. . Make sure referees have a copy of For example, if you are being given the hire the proposal of a venue for free, have volunteers working . If an assessor calls to make an for the project or staff seconded from appointment, make sure that there another organisation then spell out that is plenty of time, and peace to speak cost-saving - this helps to demonstrate that to them your application represents value for money. . Letters of support from relevant When putting together your application, prominent people may be useful always remember: . Don’t hassle the funders . Project Need : What? Where? When? . Try and raise some money locally as a Aims and Objectives? ’community contribution to the project’ . Beneficiaries : Why? For whom? . Don’t give up. If in doubt, ask the funder Scale of demand and local support? for help . Management : Who will manage the project? What track record do they have? . Budget : How much will it cost to set up and run? How much money will be raised locally? . Match Funding : From whom does the organisation expect to get the other funding? What assumptions have been made in the calculations? . Monitoring : How will the projects success be measured and what targets will be set? P 184
  7. 7. FUNDRAISING 5.3 Application Checklist Is the application being made to an appropriate funder? Does the project fit into the funders priorities and criteria? Is the amount being sought in line with the funder’s normal range of grants? Is the timing right? What is the deadline and when is the money needed by? Is the application addressed to the right person at the most recent address? Has the project an appropriate title? Is the application easy to read with no jargon or abbreviations? Is it the right length? Does the application say clearly who the organisation is and what it does? Is a contact name, address, telephone and email included? Has the project proposal been spelt out clearly - what the money is for and why it is needed? Has this been backed up with facts and figures to prove need? Does the application include how the money will be used and who will benefit? Does the application show other funding to be included as match and has in-kind funding been taken into account? Has a detailed sustainability plan been included to show how the project will continue after the funding has ceased? Do all the figures add up? Have all costs been included and are they realistic? Does the project represent ’value for money’? Have monitoring and evaluation procedures been included? Has the supporting information been included e.g. accounts/business plan? Has a copy of the bid been taken for the organisation records? P 185
  8. 8. FUNDRAISING 5.3 DEVELOPING RELATIONSHIPS WITH FUNDERS The best policy for dealing with funders is to treat them as the organisation would treat a client. Some funders like to be sent ongoing Always keep funders fully informed as information or to be invited to things to to the progression of projects that they things - openings, celebrations. Others have funded. And always keep a copy of prefer a more arms-length relationship. everything that is sent out to potential Developing relationships with those funders or actual funders. that are happy to be involved is important for the organisation and the project. Give Think too about responding (especially to funders the opportunity to do more than trusts and businesses) which turn down an simply purchase a product - engage them. application for funding. If funding comes People fund people and that funding from elsewhere consider writing, saying becomes more sustainable when the two that the organisation understands why are in the relationship, not simply sitting they chose not to fund the project on at opposite ends of a funding application. that occasion but thought they might be interested in how things have developed since and flag up forthcoming plans for their interest. Even a rejection can be the opening of a longer term relationship. P 186
  9. 9. FUNDRAISING 5.3 FUNDING EXERCISE The WLP Trust - Wrexham Women's Aid General Grants Programme The only major appeal from Wales this time, for £12,000 a year for three years for Your trust covers all of the UK and is for a part time worker to encourage mothers ’general charitable purposes’ though you to return to work. It’s a new project and specialise in heritage. However, you keep they’ve approached six other trusts of £50,00 a quarter for a general grant which, one has agreed to put in £5,000 programme under which applications of a year. all kinds can be considered on their merits. £5,000 is given in your guidelines as The Music Machine the minimum individual grant and the maximum is the full £50,000. It is the They commission new music to be quarterly trustees meeting and you have performed by entire communities. Last been working all morning on the main year they had over 4,000 singers in grants. You now have between 30 and 45 Stafford rehearse and sing a four hour minutes remaining to decide the general epic. This year they have enthused 8,000 grants. Unfortunately your Clerk, Brigadier citizens of Portsmouth but need another Rainsbury has rung in sick. He has previously £10,000 to add to existing sponsorship circulated the attached list of applications from local companies. The money will that he has checked out and considers to pay the composer and run the show. be good for their kind. You must now make the decisions. Craven College, Fulham An inner city project to help people York Cathedral Appeal who have left school early to go back No amount specified. Appeal target £5 to studying. They want £15,000 a year million. The main cathedral appeal this year. for an outreach worker. Members of the public have donated a total of £520,000 a year (excluding tax) and Parents Choice hope to raise a further £100,00 from Gift Last year we gave them £5,000 for a Aid payments. training scheme for school governors. From information received, the project went well Childline and this year they have asked for another Big appeal to pay the reversed charges for £5,000 to develop a financial skills course desperate children (It is a telephone line to for governors. help abused children). They want £10,000 from us to pay for the service in the ten most disadvantaged wards in Liverpool. P 187
  10. 10. FUNDRAISING 5.3 Harris Homes All of the above are eligible for support under our rules. Want £120,000 to buy another house to become a home for adult mentally disabled The case study applications should promote people in Bolton. They run 15 similar houses a debate around who should be funded. all models of their kind. They have not There is no right or wrong solution to approached us previously, no other this exercise as it is purely on individual income detailed. interpretation and choice. However there has to be a decision reached and it will get Age Concern Oldham the group working together and coming up £12,000 to employ a professional negotiator with a way of reaching the final decision. to win contracts from the local authority to provide accommodation for elderly people The exercise shows just how difficult it is in the area. to be in the shoes of the funder and the competition for funds. To even reach this Humberside Wildlife Trust selection stage a bid has to be well written Require £50,000 to buy a wood threatened and clear and of interest to the panel. by a Tesco development. Wood seems to be unremarkable environmentally but is well used by county’s population. Fifth Ear Project Teaches severely dyslexic children up to the age of 18 to sight-read music, using it as an unthreatening opportunity for the children to learn skills very close to normal reading. They want £5,000 for an independent evaluation to verify their apparently striking success rate. Evesham Respite Care They used trained volunteers to let the carers of older people with dementia have a break. On tapered funding (starting with £13,000 this year) they want £25,000 to develop financial independence through a direct-mail donor base. Wildlife Rescue Experts at saving stranded whales, dolphins, horses in canals etc. They are all volunteers and only want £2,500 for VHF radio kit so they can talk to coast guards and the like. P 188